Evolutionary Biology of Aging
Oxford University Press, Nov 15, 1990 - Social Science - 240 pages
This unique book looks at the biology of aging from a fundamentally new perspective, one based on evolutionary theory rather than traditional concepts which emphasize molecular and cellular processes. The basis for this approach lies in the fact that natural selection, as a powerful determining force, tends to decline in importance with age. Many of the characteristics we associate with aging, the author argues, are more the result of this decline than any mechanical imperative contained within organic structures. This theory in turn yields the most fruitful avenues for seeking answers to the problem of aging, and should be recognized as the intellectual core of gerontology and the foundation for future research. The author ably surveys the vast literature on aging, presenting mathematical, experimental, and comparative findings to illustrate and support the central thesis. The result is the first complete synthesis of this vital field. Evolutionary biologists, gerontologists, and all those concerned with the science of aging will find it a stimulating, strongly argued account.
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adult alleles antagonistic pleiotropy biology of aging cause of aging cell cultures cellular chromosomal collagen comparative death decline deterioration discussed in Chapter disease Drosophila early reproduction effects elegans environmental error catastrophe evidence evolution of aging evolutionary biology evolutionary theory exhibit experimental experiments fecundity females fitness components function gene genetic correlations genetic variation gerontology give rise Hayflick Hayflick limit hormones hypothesis inbreeding depression increase invertebrates iteroparous laboratory late-reproduced later ages life-history characters lipofuscin loci males Malthusian parameter mammals maximum longevities Maynard Smith mechanisms of aging Medawar melanogaster metabolic metazoa molecular mortality natural selection normal nutritional organismal organisms particular physiological mechanisms population genetics postponed aging prediction problem proliferation protein rates reproductive output rodents Rose and Charlesworth semelparous senescence shown in Figure soma somatic mutation span species stocks Strehler studies suggests temperature tests theory of aging tion tissue vertebrates vitro cell vivo Weismann
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